"If you can 't say something nice; don't say
anything at all?" Well, that's kind of how this week has been. And it's not that I want to be nasty toward anyone or anything l like that. No, what I meant was...if you can't say anything POSITIVE, don't say anything at all. And it's not that I'm feeling negative...but negative things are occuring in my life and it has taken all of my energy to just SIT with the new information and there has been little to say about it. Or maybe there is so much to say, that I don't know where to start.
For one thing, (the MAIN thing): I found out I have "endstage RA"...What is that? Well they used to use the expression "terminal" and RA is rheumaoid arthritis. I have also hestitated to talk about it because much of my understanding is based on things that need to be confirmed with the doctors. I'm certain that this is where I'm at though...I would know that by the degree of pain alone. I never knew before that a person can die of arthritis! Doesn't that sound bizarre?? Well, what happens is that the cervical bones, if they become unstable because of the arthritic disease, they will crumble, or shift or chip off....once the disc matter is gone from between them (as mine is) the vertebrae rub on each other and begin to eroode each other...and not only does the disc matter when it comes out, compress the spine, but so will those pieces of bone or the vertebrae themselves can get bent inways they should not be. My MRI showed that in numerous spots on my spine, the cord is becoming flattened by these pressures...If that happens in my lower back first, paralysis will result. If it happens in my C1` - C2 area (right at the base of my brain), then death will occur because heartbeat and respiration is controlled by that area of the spine and brain,.
All that anatomy and physiology is very cut and dried. But those "hard, cold facts" imply and prompt boat loads of thought and emotion, don't they? I am still not quite believing it yet. I think that I will find out somehow that there was a terrible mistake and the MRI was actually someone elses'...or that God will reach down from heaven and make my spine as new and supple as a baby's once more. And who knows? Neither of those two things are impossible. Yet....
Whether I will be departing this earth in the next week or the next decade, is almost irrelevent in the face of the pain that I'm facing today....and lately, it is worsening by the day. I was up all night, literally writhing in my recliner...trying and trying to find a position that didn't make me want to scream...and was still stupid enough to try to go to church and Sunday School this morning. I got there...but only made it halfway through the first part of it...then I just had to walk out. Pain is nothing new to me...but this is like something I've not experienced before. I am so grateful that my recliner and my hospital bed (sporting a brand new mattress, by God's grace)....are mostly tolerable...as long as I don't stay in one of them for long...I can only stand it for about two hours...then must switch to the other. That's how my nights go too. Only I can't go back to sleep once the pain dragon has been awakened...so I'm sleepless after eleven pm. So that makes me one exhausted and cranky girl.
Where is food, nutition and exercise in the midst of this?? Well, up until yesterday, I'd eased up on myself til all I was doing were some easy stretches and a few yoga poses. But today, that is even out of the realm of possilbity...so I will just have to open my hand and let it go. Maybe thing s will improve at some point, but for now, it is out of the question.
When I first got the news, my appetite left me completely for a week. I did attempt to eat SOMETHING each day, but it was really very little...way under 1000 calories. However, since yesterday, it seems that I am hungry a lot of the time...especially early in the day...II must've eaten three breakfasts yesterday and today (each!)...Not sure why that is. It's almost like I was on steroids again...but I'm not. Although maybe not for long :(
Anyway...that's an update. Sorry if it was lengthy, and VERY sorry if it was a depressing one. (And btw, that is a sincere, not sarcastic apology...). I know that Spark focuses on being a positive influence on people. But hey, sometimes LIFE happens. And sometimes DEATH makes an appearance too. And they both can be less that cheery all the time...All II can do is to promise you I'm doing my best to avoid my "frownie face" and to keep a smile ready.